I woke up this morning ready to journal and asked out loud “What is it that I need to understand about the state I am in?”
I am sick. I have had a cold since the beginning of June with a full on croupy cough (my go-to ailment since I was a young child) that keeps me awake at night and a muzzy stuffed up head with clogged sinuses. Add record summer heat to the mix and I am living my least favorite scenario. And yes…I have a call in to my homeopath!
How did I end up here? I have a theory. You know how you should never ever talk about having extra money in front of your appliances or your car? Why? Because next thing you know, those few extra bucks get ‘eaten’ by repairs or replacement! I think most of us are familiar with that energy dynamic.
There seems to be another one. You tell yourself you are going to enjoy four days off visiting, relaxing and playing with your sister and your body overhears and without so much as a warning, you go into sick ‘detox’ mode. That is exactly how I ended up here with the go-to croupy cough. I could quite literally hear my body saying ‘Oh good! She is finally going to relax. Let’s clean this place up!’
Physician Heal Thyself or A Taste of Your Own Medicine
So it was for me at the beginning of the month. My body took over…which brings me to the idea of surrender and a new book that I am reading called The Surrender Experiment by Michael Springer. Surrendering to life as it is and not how I wish it to be. This is the challenge when we are sick.
It is so much easier to say to others when they are sick ‘Sickness is neither good nor bad. Your body is simply physically releasing built up stress.’ Please forgive me if I have said that very thing to you in the midst of a cough or cold or flu. Possibly the last thing you want to hear when all you want to be is well enough to enjoy life.
But being sick does offer some time to reflect which takes me back to the question of the morning. What do I need to understand? Because being sick right now is not convenient. At least that is what one of the voices in my head is saying. ‘I have so much to do. How will I have time to get it all done? There’s the people to see in consult, journaling, meditation, writing, reading, exercise, making meals, visiting friends? Truth is, I am all too often thinking of the next thing to do rather than being fully present in the moment of the doing, whatever the doing is. Instead of merging my being and doing into one (as in being in the present moment or surrendering to the moment), unpleasant tasks and illness seem to keep being and doing separate. If I am sick I think of all the things I should be doing in the future or what I think I should be doing instead of being sick where my over riding thought is “a nap would feel SO good right now.”
Surrender to the nap!
Could I really say that in the middle of a meeting? ‘Sorry, but I am surrendering to a need for rest.’ As moms/dads/parents of small children that isn’t always an option, I know. I do have to admit though on my worst sick days as a parent, my boys tended to be on their best behavior which allowed me to rest or at least go slower.
Sometimes surrendering to life does have surprises or as Springer says in his book, life has a better plan than the one we could devise for ourselves.
Back to the Question
What is it that I need to understand about the state I am in?
I turn to some cards that I have called The Sacred Path by Jamie Sams. This is a way for me to ask questions before I set out on my morning pages. (a journaling technique from Julia Cameron’s book The Artist’s Way)
Then comes the answer.
Expansion. Really? Again? I feel like I about as expanded as one person can get! But this seems to be a recurring theme in my life. Somehow I thought that a Gramma’s life slowed down by this age!
The card is Storyteller, which takes me back to my days as speech arts instructor and storyteller, which was another expansion period in my life. Love of the printed word and the spoken art took me through the terrifying process of performing.
Themes in our lives repeat.
“…the Storyteller can gently remind us of our wrong thinking and allow us to correct the erroneous behavior without shaming us in front of others. This teaching art is one way of allowing each person to decide what the story means for them.”
“Create more and enjoy the expansion, knowing you earned it. Note that the expansion will continue if you are willing to share how you achieved your success with others. Many lives are influenced by another’s story. In the good fortune of your present situation you may be instrumental in encouraging others.”
“In all cases, expansion occurs when people are allowed to grow at their own rate and with their own understanding. The wisdom of the Storyteller is a part of the art of remembering. Note that you are now remembering your Personal Medicine and how to be your potential.”
Just a Cold
And here I thought I just had a cold. Turns out that when you surrender, life is generous, more generous than I was with myself thinking that I just need a good remedy or that I just need to get better. Whatever better is!
The gift of the sickness is going deeper into my being and accepting where I am is exactly where I need to be. Seems it is all about surrendering to loving oneself in the moment, in sickness or in health. Sickness has a way of bringing all of us back to the present moment. And surrender allows us to explore the state we are in, without judgment but trusting that some kind of good just might come from ‘just a cold’.
Yours in health, healing and deep surrender,